An international conference on Africa and its influence in the area
Held every two year, in this south eastern Cuban city, the conference is sponsored by the Fernando Ortiz Cultural African Centre, the Provincial Cultural Direction and the UNESCO Department of Afro and Iberian American Studies of the of Alcalá de Henares University, Spain.
The cultural and research reach of the biannual meeting, which deepens in the African links with Cuba, is inferred from the importance given by the Alcalá de Henares University, a very prestigious study house, located in the city where two Spanish outstanding writers were born: Juan Ruiz and Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra and of two important kings of the modern age: Catalina from Aragon and Fernando I of Habsburgo.
In 1498 the clergyman and political Francisco Jiménez de Cisneros created the Alcalá de Henares University that became one of the most important higher education centres of Spain. On 2 of December 1998, UNESCO declares the university a Patrimony of the Humanity, as well as the historical centre of the municipality of about 200 000 inhabitants.
In the organization in Santiago from Cuba of the international meeting about African and Afro-American culture also take part the Rómulo Lachatañeró Department of Afro Caribbean Studies, the Heredia Theatre, main venue of the Conference, the Centre of Applied Linguistics of the Territorial Delegation of CITMA (Cuban Ministry of Science, Technology and Environment) and the University of Oriente.
Experts, researchers, African diplomats and personalities of the culture in Cuba, Spain and the African and American continents, regularly attend the meeting in Santiago de Cuba. This time, the meeting will include several workshops titled The colour and the form, Images, The ancestral rhythm and Mask as well as the III Symposium Medicine and Culture.
The mentioned XI International Conference will have in 2010 several topics: pre-colonial Africa: social, political and economic structures; Colonial Africa, main European establishments, Formation of countries and nationalities in Africa, Freedom wars and Relationships of Africa with the world.
The program is completed with: the Atlantic trade, its treatment and the current historiography; The slave and their manumission forms; Fences and cimarronaje (rebel slaves); Attitude of the African people towards the trade; Diachronic and synchronic in the linguistic, philosophical, historical and literary studies about Africa; Afro-America and Afro-Caribbean and Gender, race and identity.
Simultaneously to the study meetings of the Conference which will take place in rooms of the majestic Heredia Theatre, in the Avenue of America, the meeting will also have artistic activities in communities and cultural centres of this city, which next July will became 495 years of existence.
Santiago de Cuba is one of the first seven villages founded by the Spanish colonialists in the XVI century, after the encounter (called discovery) of the European cultures and that of the so called New World, in 1492, held by Christopher Columbus, on behalf of the Crown of Spain, and the aboriginal people from the Caribbean, representing the inhabitants of the continent.
Por Miguel A. Gaínza
Source: sierramaestra.cu and Cubarte